IIHS Toughens Up Crash-Test Standards for 2018

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Hyundai, its partner Kia and its Genesis division are the big winners in the latest vehicle safety ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, accounting for six of the 15 models that earned the Top Safety Pick+ awards for 2018.

Subaru had the most Safety Pick+ vehicles.

Of the hundreds of vehicle models on the road today, only 15 have earned the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating for 2018 due to tougher safety requirements when it comes to passenger side front collisions.

For 2018, IIHS said 47 vehicles earned its lower Top Safety Pick designation, which now requires acceptable- or good-rated headlights; headlights weren't a factor for the 2017 Top Safety Pick award. Mercedes-Benz has two while Toyota, BMW, and Ford have one each.

Toyota had the most vehicles on the top safety pick with 10 winning the award.

Crash tests have been part of the IIHS's playbook for years to make sure drivers are protected, but this year it chose to add tests to see how well passengers are protected.

Subaru had four vehicles earn the IIHS
Subaru had four vehicles earn the IIHS"Top Pick Plus safety designation

Here is a link to all the top safety picks, which includes the reasons why they were chosen. The sole Subaru model that did not qualify was the BRZ.

He says the passenger side crash test was developed "after it became clear that some manufacturers weren't paying enough attention to passenger side protection". It's similar to the existing small front overlap test, a rigorous evaluation that crashes a vehicle into a barrier at 40 miles per hour with just 25 percent of the driver-side front end striking the obstacle.

The first official passenger-side ratings were released in October, following research tests a year ago.

"Drivers expect that their passengers, who are often family, will be protected just as well as they are", IIHS President Adrian Lund said, according to Consumer Reports.

The Institute's headlight ratings also are relatively new, with the first ones being released in March 2016.

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